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  • Aberdeenshire home automation firm boosts region’s digital and tech skills by developing new teaching resource
  • IoT skills are set to become the next big sought-after digital skill in the UK
  • In 2021, 75% of the UK owns at least one smart home device
  • Over 50% of people have invested in a smart device for their homes since the first lockdown in 2020. Smart TVs, smart heating controls and voice assistants are some of the most popular choices

Home automation firm, TL Tech, has teamed up with the North East Scotland College (NESCol) Fraserburgh campus to inspire and educate the next generation of Internet of Things (IoT) engineers with a bespoke interactive teaching resource.

The one-of-a-kind display board, which took 8 weeks to design and build, incorporates a wide range of internet connected devices, a control hub and interactive dashboard display. Engineering students will be able to learn more about the electrical wiring and computer programme involved in smart homes. The interactive display board will support NESCol staff as well as students learn more about IoT technologies.

The bespoke interactive teaching resource was designed and built by Thomas Laurenson, Technical Director and founder of TL Tech.

Thomas comments: “The skills of an IoT engineer are quite broad, as it requires knowledge of electronics, electrical wiring and coding. We’re going to need a skilled workforce going forward as demand for smart home technologies increases. It’s very much a growing specialist trade that will sit alongside the more traditional trades. The new interactive display board is an excellent way to physically demonstrate the wide variety of applications and allow students to get hands on with the practical side of things.”

Kevin Bruce, Head of Faculty Engineering and Construction at Fraserburgh Campus comments: “We are delighted with this piece of innovative technology created by TL Tech which reflects the growing trend towards homes becoming smarter. Today it’s possible to control so much of your home from smartphone apps – heating, lighting, kitchen appliances, CCTV etc., so this welcome addition to our Technology Innovation Centre will allow students and staff to familiarise themselves with the engineering and computing technologies behind home automation.

“The beauty of this display board is that it has been designed for students of all abilities, from school pupils through to those studying at HN level. It will benefit everyone. It doesn’t matter if you are not studying STEM related subjects as this is an area that impacts us all.”

Since 2018, use of smart home devices in the UK has more than tripled. As there a vast amount of choice for consumers, not all systems are compatible with each other. The technologies can also be difficult for consumers to set-up and use due to the design of the user interface, which leads to expensive mistake purchases and underutilisation of the technology’s capability. Home automation specialists need to be able recommend products and design systems that provide seamless integration of the technologies.

TL Tech’s on-going partnership with NESCol will include support for the teaching staff as they further develop the curriculum into this specialist and growing area of technology.

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